Thursday, December 04, 2014

Box Kite & Bindings!

This is me, trying to take a photo of pressing a black 2” cut binding in half.

How do you take a photo of this when you are just one person? 

You can’t put the iron down on the fabric and hold the camera with two hands – I might scorch the fabric, that iron is hot!

So this is as much of an “action shot” as it’s going to be.

Yes, I’m using a 2” binding strip--- because I want a tight and full 1/4” binding on a quilt where the pieced border goes to the edge.

I am one of those who DOES press my binding in half.  I find if I don't that I get warping and twisting of the layers.  SHIFT happens!

If I press my binding in half first, it seems to hold together evenly when sewing it down with no creeping and crawling.

I could add another plain border to make the binding easier, but the quilt is already big enough, and sometimes I feel that adding a plain border outside the edge of the pieced border minimizes the effect of the pieced borders somehow.

If I want a quilt to end with POW ---I don’t add another plain fabric border outside of it, just to make it easier to bind.


Trimming up the quilt!

I know I’ve shown this before but with the Grand Illusion Mystery going on, we’ve got loads of new readers – so I’ll share a photo again of how this works.

After quilting, I use a large ruler with a good 1/4” line.  Putting the line on the triangle points…I trim 1/4” beyond the points so it is easy to put my binding on and not eat up those points in the process.


The Old with the New!

See that butterscotch colored triangle front and center?  Above the kokopeli and next to the ticking stripe with the apples. Yep.  That one.  Jason was about a year old when I bought that.  He is now 31.  This has been in my stash for 30 years.  Next to it is a house print from maybe the 1980s?  There is some new stuff in here too.  If you look at the fabric as COLOR, and stop worrying about the print, and you throw it all in – it all WORKS!


Quilt is trimmed!  Binding prepared!  Let’s go!


My set up!

I’ve left this machine set up with the walking foot attached because I’ve been doing a lot of bindings lately!

You can see that the walking foot is WIDER than the 1/4” I want to sew.  This is a straight stitch walking foot on a straight stitch vintage machine, so there is no way to needle over to get the 1/4” that I want like on a modern digital machine.

So I’ve used my Trusty Seam Guide ruler which has holes for 1/4”, 3/8”. 1/2”, 5/8” and 3/4” seams.  The needle is in the 1/4” hole..and I’ve used THE BEST SEAM GUIDE EVER in front of the walking foot so I have a good edge to sew up against when adding my 1/4” finished binding.


Binding Away!

The height of the guide, made from a piece of old hotel room key with a strip of scotch restickable mounting strip underneath is the perfect height to use as an edge when adding a binding, or doing regular piecing.  I can’t live without the combo of my ruler and the best seam guide ever ((Not sold in a quilt shop!)) to give me seams where I want them to be.


Look!  No chopped off points!

The narrow binding means that my pieced border will be the main focus at the edge of the quilt..the binding won’t over power it.

I hope to finish getting the binding on today – I want to hand sew the binding down while at the cabin this weekend.

And oh yeah – the Seam guides along with all of the books in my online store are STILL 20% off through Sunday during my SUPER CYBER SALE!  Click HERE to learn more!

Tomorrow Morning!  Bright and Early  ((Or later depending on which part of the globe you live!))

Grand Illusion, PART 2!!

PS --- I think the antibiotics and pain meds are kicking in for Sadie.  She didn’t seem to have nearly as much trouble climbing the stairs today, and her tail is wagging!

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  1. Beautiful quilt and that binding is perfect! Thanks for the refresher on putting binding on. Always something new to learn.

    So glad to hear your dear Sadie is feeling better! A weekend at the cabin will have her feeing like herself again. Really glad ,if this had to happen , you were home to care for her and not on the road worrying about her.

    Enjoy your weekend at the cabin! I'll be sewing away on Grand Illusion Step 2!

    Ellie Lively

  2. Anonymous9:42 AM EST

    So glad Sadie Jane is feeling better. Older pets are a worry. I have two geriatric pets that are 13. I had to laugh at one block in the kite block. I had a tablecloth and appliance covers made out of the blue and white cow print with the red hearts...ages ago. Always enjoy your instructions too.
    Judy, buddym2@windstream.net

  3. A wagging tail is usually a good sign! Thanks for sharing the info on binding. It's my least favorite part of quilting so maybe I can learn to at least like it. Enjoy your time at the cabin.

  4. Love tail waggiing ~ always a good sign! Appreciate the refresher course on the binding ... can never have too much information.

  5. Love your binding fabric! and admire your 2" width! .... I take it Sadie is a bit better this morning? It's amazing what Momma's Love can cure! Have a Sparkling day Bonnie..

    Debra in Ma.

  6. Bonnie I'm so happy Sadie is feeling better. :) I love your seam guide having 6 antique's I find them the best for my 1/4 inch seam, but I do have 1/4 feet for my more modern machine, but find its not a true 1/4 inch. I use your seam guide now all the time. I use stick note pads , this way I can keep track of how my blocks are completed for the Grand Illusion. Using a pencil and the five tick system.

    I've just ordered another seam guide and one of your books.

    Thank you Bonnie for all you do. And your post. They mean a lot to me, being on my own I look forward to them.

    Have a great day!

  7. Glad to hear Sadie is doing better today. I've found that it is easiest to get that sample first thing in the morning and if you leave a clean aluminum pie plate by the door that you let the dog out you can grab it and get the sample before they realize what you are doing. Transfer the sample to an old clean jar and put in the refrigerator until you go to the vet. (Label it clearly!!!) Thank you for all you do for us, Bonnie!

  8. I had that kokopeli fabric in 4 or 5 colors, made my mom a quilt for Christmas in 1999 with it, memories it brings back.

    Glad Sadie is on the mend!

  9. Good news to hear about Sadie! Tomorrow will hopefully be even better! Can't wait until tomorrow, I am ready for Step 2! Box kite is beautiful!

  10. Love your quilt! I'm a presser for everything - just keeps things straighter for me and I feel more confident about the results. LOL I really do press everything & am hard on my irons - that's why I probably go through soooooo many!! (but that's another story!)
    Good to hear that Sadie is feeling better :)

  11. Yeah! so happy to hear Sadie is on the mend. We all feel better now :-)
    Great tutorial for your pieced border and skinny binding. It really looks good!

  12. It has been a busy week and I am sitting down today to do last week's clue!! Then I will be ready for tomorrow. So glad for wagging tails, glad Sadie is on the mend!!

  13. A tail wagging dog is a treat to have. Glad Sadie's is wagging!

  14. Anonymous11:46 AM EST

    I'm so glad that Sadie is on the mend! It's very stressful thinking about our friends being in pain or not feeling well. She looks like a real sweetie!!

  15. I bought a simplicity bias tape maker on sale a few years ago. They have attachments now for bindings. Yards of bindings done Quick , easy, and accurately in just minutes.

  16. I'm so glad that Sadie is doing better!!! Thanks for all you do! Looking forward to Part 2! I hope I can finish Part 1 today.

  17. I also cannot sew anymore without your awesome "Best Seam Guide Ever". And I just love that it "cannot be bought in quilt stores".

    Thanks for the Sadie Jane update and glad to hear she's wagging again.

  18. Did you know that you can set your camera to respond the commands like "shoot", "Cheese" and "Smile"?
    We found this by accident on the Husband's phone, and it marvellous because he has shaky hands, so needs both to steady the phone/camera.

  19. Glad to hear Sadie is happy and feeling better! Looking forward to the next clue! Love your quilt border! Happy binding! Thanks for the Mystery, your the best!
    Lisa in MN

  20. Bonnie, you just burst my bubble by saying you're 'just one person!' I was hoping there are at least two of you that accomplish everything you do. Now, what excuse do the rest of mere mortals have? Lol. Seriously, I'm very happy that Sadie Jane is on the mend. Kids and dogs are so stressful to us when they are ill since they can't tell us what hurts. Thanks for the refresher with the binding and cutting it in the bias. Enjoy your cabin in the mountains.

  21. I also like a small binding, and depending on the batting will cut the binding at 1 7/8 of an inch wide. A nice tight binding wears very well also.

  22. I am so glad to hear that Sadie is on the mend! As a pet lover (two cats - brother and sister we took in when they wandered in our yard as babies) I understand your worries about her.... Ordered some books last week and waiting for their arrival along with the seam guides that will be gifts for quilting friends. Thank you for your wonderful blog and all the sharing of your talent.

  23. Anonymous3:07 PM EST

    So glad to read this about the binding. Was doing a small baby quilt and didn't press. Had a bit of a problem with it creeping. Now I know it is definitely worth the time spent.

    Glad to hear Sadie Jane is feeling a bit better.

  24. This post came at the perfect time for me. I read it before trimming my Easy Street. Since I did not put extra borders on it, I have points that I do not want to cut off with the binding. I actually found it easier to trim because I had all these 1/4 inch landmarks to hit as I trimmed around. I am still going with my 2 1/4 inch binding. I still have to connect all my strips and iron in half. it is so nice to follow right after you as you trim and bind your quilt. Thank you!

  25. One of the (many) things I like about seeing close-up pics of your quilts is studying the scraps and being able to see fabrics that I have in my own stash. I've got the kokopeli fabric in green!

    Sydney, Australia

  26. Thank you Miss Bonnie!!!

  27. Anonymous10:03 PM EST

    Been keeping you and Miss Sadie in my prayers! I would not like to ask to choose to live without my four levers! Blessings, Bonnie! Barbara

  28. Hip! Hip! Hooray! on the Sadie report!!!!

  29. Anonymous3:54 PM EST

    Couldn't you turn the iron off to take the picture? It would be a fake action shot, but there wouldn't be any scorching and you could use both hands on the camera.

  30. So happy Sadie is feelin better. We have a new puppy and when I took her in for shots week b/4 last, yet another family was having to put down a family member. You would have thought it was my pet! I felt so bad I couldn't help but cry. I just can't control it! Seems every time I go in there is someone else having to say good bye. So hard.
    Tissue time....


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